Cresson, PA – The D'Youville men's basketball team had their comeback attempt over the Mount Aloysius Mounties fall short on Saturday afternoon, playing another close game as they fell to the Mounties by the final score of 65-62.
Mount Aloysius didn't waste much time going up over D'Youville leading 7-3 through the first three minutes of play. That lead grew to nine over the next several minutes before a Jeremy VanDuluitgaarden (Verona, NY/Vernon-Verona-Sherrill) jumper made it a six-point game moments later. Brian Nwaekeke (Corona, CA/John F. Kennedy) would then drill a three to make it a five-point game and minutes later, Devon Camel (Cheektowaga, NY/Cheektowaga) would sink a layup to make the score 15-12 in favor of the Mounties.
Over the next several possessions, Aloysius would build their lead back up over D'Youville. The Mounties would double-up the Spartans with a 24-12 advantage with just under 10 minutes to go in the first. That lead grew to 15 with 6:03 remaining in the half with the Mounties appearing to be in control of the game, but the Spartans would begin to get their offense going and get back in the game.
Following a VanDuluitgaarden layup, Camel would make a layup of his own to go with a three and D'Youville would trail by eight. Minutes later, Camel hit his second three to make it a five-point game at 32-27 following a Grant Beyer (Williamsville, NY/St. Joe's) made jumper. Beyer would then close out the half with a made free throw as the Spartans closed the gap to four at halftime, trailing 32-28.
Camel's third three of the game put D'Youville behind by two nearly three minutes into the second as the Spartans began to challenge the Mounties for the lead. Mount Aloysius answered by expanding their lead to seven at 46-39 with 12:38 to go in the game, holding off the Spartans for the time being. The deficit grew to 10 for D'Youville before the men would begin to heat up from the outside.
Brian Sharp (Newark, NY/Newark) checked into the game for the Spartans and drilled back-to-back threes for the men, cutting the Mounties lead to 53-50. Mount Aloysius answered to regain a nine-point lead with 4:39 to go. D'Youville continued to battle as a VanDuluitgaarden layup put the Spartans behind five with the senior hitting a big three to make it a two-point game. Beyer would then hit a three of his own with 0:38 to go, making it a one-point game with the Spartans trailing 63-62.
The Mounties would make a pair free throws to go up 65-62 as the Spartans had one final opportunity to tie the game. With a solid look from three as time expired, the team was unable to force overtime as Mount Aloysius would defeat D'Youville by the final score of 65-62.
"Tough loss for us today," said head coach Earl Schunk. "We came out tentatively and they jumped out to a big lead. We kept coming back and eventually had four shots in the last two minutes to tie or win the game and they just wouldn't fall. I have total faith that my guys will bounce back from this."
Beyer led the team with 17 points in the game with Camel adding 12 of his own. VanDuluitgaarden scored 13 points with 16 rebounds and five assists – both team highs. Will VanAuken (Caledonia, NY/Caledonia-Mumford) added eight rebounds with four assists as Devon Darrell (Lockport, NY/Lockport) scored three points.
Sharp led the team with nine points off the bench with Nwaekeke scored three points and a team high three steals. Simeon Heard (Rochester, NY/Charles Finney) scored five points with a steal and a block in the game.
The next game for the men will come on Wednesday, January 16 as the men travel to Pitt.-Bradford to play the Panthers at 8:00pm.